What Is Rimming, What It Feels Like, Why We Like It & Safety

Rimming can be very pleasurable for men and women. Explore exactly what it means to give a rim job, why we like it, what it feels like, and safety precautions.
Photograph Of Woman Seductively Licking A Pink Donut, Analingus Concept
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A rim job, also known as rimming, means having oral sex with an anus — kissing, licking, or sucking it — to provide pleasure to the recipient externally or internally — if the tongue slips inside the anus.

Here’s what you need to know about rimming:

  • When rimming, one partner uses their mouth and tongue to stimulate the outer anus, optionally inserting their tongue inside the anus for internal stimulation.
  • Rimming can feel good if you enjoy having your anus stimulated and the sensation is pretty similar to having a lubed finger rubbing or tickling the rim of your anus.
  • When giving a rim job, a person’s anus tastes like nothing more than skin — there generally isn’t an unpleasant flavor as long as the anal area is clean.
  • Rimming can be safe but it is not without risk, as the anus can harbor bacteria from fecal matter (such as E. coli or salmonella) and STIs can be transmitted between partners, particularly if the giver has abrasions, cuts, or open sores in their mouth.
  • The act of rimming is not new or necessarily novel — it’s actually been around for centuries.

There is an ingrained sense of shock and (possible) disgust at the very idea of licking another person’s butthole since, you know, that’s where poop comes out.

Rimming is not some new phenomenon invented by Millennials, however, and it can be enjoyed safely — but there are some very important precautions to consider first.

Things To Know

Frequently Asked Questions About Rimming

If this is your first time hearing about rim jobs, you likely have a lot of questions about the activity — including what it involves, why it feels good (if it does), and why people do it in the first place.

What Is A Rim Job (Rimming)?

A rim job involves using the tongue and mouth to stimulate another person’s outer anus, with the optional insertion of the tongue.

This particular sex act has been around for generations and has gone by many names:

  • Analingus
  • Tossing salad
  • Ass licking
  • Eating ass
  • Eating jam
  • Eating poundcake
  • Cleaning the kitchen

For bonus points, if you add a reach-around handjob to your rimming, you’re “playing a rusty trombone.”

Despite the popular theory that all Millennials eat is avocado toast and ass, rimming has been around for centuries.

There are many historical references to tossing one’s salad and the phrase, “kiss my ass,” actually dates back to the 15th century (c. 1460) while “ass licker” became a term popularized in the 20th century.

Why Is Rimming Considered Appealing?

The answer is simple: People rim one another because they enjoy it.

Considering everything we’ve been told about things we “shouldn’t” put in or around our mouths and butts, rimming is nevertheless considered appealing.

Some people enjoy the sensation of receiving it — the anus is a highly responsive erogenous zone, after all — while others get off on giving this type of pleasure to a partner.

Additionally, many people are turned on by the taboo nature of rimming.

You’re engaging in an activity that feels forbidden, in a sense — and there is an allure to be found in exploring something that you “shouldn’t.”

There is no exclusive group that enjoys rim jobs, either.

Any combination of folks you can think of might be down to join in, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

As the saying goes, everyone has an asshole.

Does Rimming Feel Good?

If you are into having your anus stimulated, then yes — rimming can and does feel good.

It can be a treat, but if you’re not into having anything traipsing around your anus, then having a tongue join the party can feel more than a little shocking, especially at first.

It is entirely your call.

What Does Rimming Feel Like?

How rimming feels is difficult to describe.

It’s like having a lubed-up finger tickle and rub around the rim of your anus, only the finger belongs to a world-renowned pianist or skilled puppeteer.

As for the person doing the rimming, there is a definite difference compared to other forms of oral sex.

Your tongue will notice the ridges and texture around the outside of the anus as your mouth alone supplies the lube.

What Does A Rim Job Taste Like?

The big question everyone wants to know is “What does rimming taste like?”

For how often we describe unpleasant things as “tasting like ass”, the ass itself doesn’t taste like much.

As long as the area is clean, it’s just more skin — and tastes like it.

“If you’re worried about the taste, or want to add some flavor to the experience, you can use an edible flavored lube,” Dr. Susan Milstein, a human sexuality health educator on our medical review board, said.

“Just make sure it’s safe for rimming,” she advised. “That means it needs to be safe for the anus and one that is safe to ingest.”

Granted, there could be some possibly off putting flavor if the recipient just did some hill sprints or hasn’t cleaned themselves recently, but a quick shower is an easy solution to that problem.

Is Rimming Safe?

Rimming is safe-ish.

As with any activity where bodies and their fluids or waste products are involved, there are important risks to consider.

If one partner has an STI, it can be passed on during rimming, especially if the giver has abrasions (open wounds, cuts, or sores) in their mouth that can more easily transmit or receive a bacterial or viral infection.

One study found a higher incidence of oropharyngeal gonorrhea among those who engage in kissing or analingus (rimming).

Chlamydia can also be transmitted during rimming, along with HPV and mycoplasma genitalium (also known as M. genitalium), a bacterial infection that’s becoming common among men who have sex with other men.

There are also specific risks relating to dangerous bacteria or intestinal parasites harbored by the rectum and anus, which can include salmonella, E. coli, campylobacter, or shigella (shigellosis), as well as giardia.

As long as everyone is clean, eating right, and tested for STIs, there is minimal risk.

If you’re at all concerned, however, then barriers (such as a dental dam) would work well here.

Is Rimming Sanitary?

With some preparations, yes — rimming can be sanitary.

Assuming the receiver is eating a balanced diet and has no history of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or a similar condition, anal leakage shouldn’t be an issue — even though poop can happen during anal, rimming doesn’t involve deep penetration.

Basic cleanliness around the anus such as showering and cleaning the area with mild soap and water goes a long way toward reducing dangerous bacteria that might otherwise be present.

But cleanliness doesn’t remove all risks.

The best course of action is to use a dental dam — which is essentially a thin layer of (usually latex) material that goes over the anus.

Think of it as a condom for your tongue.

In fact, Dr. Justin Lehmiller, a sexologist on our medical review board, suggests cutting a condom open and using that in place of a dental dam if you don’t have one handy!

If things are going to get a little more intense and one partner is considering inserting their tongue into the anus of the other, douching is a common practice — although we don’t recommend it because it can potentially do more harm than good.

How To Prepare For Rimming

With a little preparation, there’s no reason why you can’t have a little fun munching on some butt.

If you are on the receiving end of rimming, make sure your anal area is clean. A good shower with gentle soap and water should do the trick, but don’t scrub too hard.

Rough and vigorous scrubbing can cause small cuts or tears on the skin that could lead to infection.

If you’re at the back end of this consensual human centipede, then just warm up your jaw and tongue and check for any open wounds in and around your mouth before you begin.

As we mentioned earlier, a dental dam is an optimal solution to ensure the safety of all involved in the activity.

In Conclusion

Rimming, also known as a rim job, can be considered upper-level oral sex.

While it might seem like a new craze, the act of putting your mouth to another’s butt is centuries old.

Tossing salad can seem scary, especially considering our modern sanitation standards, but the forbidden fruit always tastes the sweetest.

So, hit the showers and get cleaned up.

The pound cake is ready to be served.